7 Essential Steps to Web Site Promotion
Copyright 2003 by Herman Drost
Web Site promotion should be the major part of your web site marketing plan. It's not enough just to design a beautiful web site and put in on the Net. Promoting your web site has to be done constantly if you want to get a continuous stream of traffic to it. If you don't drive traffic to your web site, your online business venture will soon fail.
1. Create a web site marketing plan
if you fail to plan then you default to a plan for failure. When designing your web site, create a plan on how to market it as well. Try to put yourself in your customers shoes when doing this. It's too easy to just view your web site from your own perspective. You need to have a clear vision for your business, goals (short and long term) you wish to achieve and the strategies of how you will accomplish them.
2. Define your target market
many online marketers promote their web site aimlessly in a field which is too large i.e. they may use bulk mailing as one of their promotion strategies. Of course you may get some visitors but the chances are you will not make many sales. Why? You have not narrowed your field of customers and targeted them. If you sold Cadillacs online for instance, you are not randomly going to market to every person on the Net. Your target market may be previous owners of cadillacs, or people who routinely purchase luxury American cars.
Getting targeted customers to your web site, will increase sales, because they will have more interest in your product or service than marketing to a general audience.
3. Use several promotion strategies
don't just stick to one form of promotion because you never know which one will work the best for you. If you use many channels i.e. search engines, email marketing, forums, writing articles etc you have a greater chance of getting more traffic to your web site.
4. Promote continuously
if you want to drive constant traffic to your web site, you must promote it continuously. Web traffic is the lifeblood of your online business. For example, you could constantly optimize your web pages for the search engines, resubmit them if needed, visit discussion forums every day and write an article for online publications every two weeks.
5. Calculate your return on investment (ROI)
this means keeping track of how much money you invested in your marketing plan and what profit you received in return. This will avoid wasting large sums of money thrown aimlessly into advertising.
If you calculate it takes 100 visitors to your web site to generate one sale and with each sale you make $10, then you shouldn't spend more than 10 cents to get each targeted visitor and still make a profit.
In order to know which aspects of your marketing campaign bring the most visitors, you must be able to monitor visitor activity to your web pages.
6. Analyze your web site traffic
by analyzing your web site traffic, you can determine what marketing strategies are successful. You can then change them as necessary, to boost the sales or services from your site.
Your analysis may include what keywords your visitors are using to find your web site, which web pages are the most popular and where your visitors are coming from. These are essential statistics you should know, instead of blindly promoting your web site and hoping for the best.
7. Test, monitor and track your results
to run an effective online marketing campaign, you need to constantly test what works and what doesn't. Tracking the response to an ad may cause you to refine it until it generates a great return on the money you invested. Once your results are satisfactory, you can then roll out your ads on a larger scale and spend greater sums of money.
You should also monitor your site in the search engines, so you can optimize your web pages for higher search engine rankings. This will attract more visitors which leads to higher profits.
Web site promotion strategies will differ for everyone, and will depend a lot on your product, web site and your personality. Try everything you can, record the results, and see what works for you.